A robotics team based at Aberdeen High School will participate in a regional competition this weekend at the Baltimore Convention Center.

The team has won awards in competition in 2007 and 2008 for its creations and will do its best again when they compete among 60 teams March 8 to 10 in the Chesapeake Regional FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition.

The competition is free and open to the public.

Team 1980, also known at "The Brigade," is comprised of 36 local high school students and is coached by Mark Evans, a teacher at the Science and Mathematics Academy at Aberdeen High School.


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The Brigade is sponsored by the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command's (REDECOM) communications-electronics Research, Development and Engineering center (CERDEC) and is mentored by U.S. Army engineers.

It's one of two teams in the region sponsored by RDECOM, the other is Team 3941, or "Absolute Zero Electricity," also based at Aberdeen.

The team is comprised of four sub-teams: mechanisms, electrical, drive and chassis and public relations, taking on different tasks to work together effectively and focusing on their strengths.

Since 2006, after breaking away from another FIRST team, Team 1719, The Brigade has been constructing robots that accomplish certain tasks, such as scoring soccer goals.

For this year's competition, the robot will have to play sports once more.

This year's theme, "Rebound Rumble," will focus around a robotics basketball game. The winning team will go to compete in the FIRST Championship in Saint Louis, Mo.

The Brigade also competed in last year's Chesapeake Regional Competition with, what they called, the LogoMotion Robot.

This machine used an arm to score tubes in the shape of the team's logo, three front-facing tanks with "1980" below one.